Pine Creek Gauge is UP!!!!

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mgood
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Joined: Fri Aug 22, 2008 9:50 pm
Location: Shreveport, LA - soon to be Fayetteville

Pine Creek Gauge is UP!!!!

Post by mgood » Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:16 am

I am glad to announce that Pine Creek on Flagpole Mountain in Oklahoma has a brand spanking new USGS gauge offering real-time stream height for paddlers. USGS Data Chief Jason Lewis has been instrumental in shepherding us through the process and Oklahoma USGS even went so far as to donate the actual gauge. This gauge would not be possible without Oklahoma USGS, the Arkansas Canoe Club, John and Stacy Fletcher of Little Rock, and OKC Kayak. Two chapters of the Arkansas Canoe Club—the Dirt Bowl Chapter and the Northwest Chapter—donated additional funds over-and-above what the ACC leadership had committed.

This gauge caps off a year and a half of effort from the Arkansas Canoe Club to establish reliable data on Flagpole Mountain, a unique plateau in southeast Oklahoma near Antlers that offers at least eight quality whitewater runs, from Class III to Class IV-V. We are mightily suspicious that there are additional creeks on this plateau that are good for paddling. Flagpole Mountain is 4 hours from Little Rock; 3.25 hours from Shreveport; 2.5 hours from Dallas; 2.6 hours from Oklahoma City; 2.2 hours from Tulsa; 3 hours from Fayetteville; 2.2 hours from Fort Smith; 3 hours from Hot Springs; and 2.25 hours from Texarkana. Camping is available nearby at Hugo Lake State Park. You have no excuse not to go.

This gauge opens up a whole region to paddling. We have nothing by which to correlate the gauge, so every time that anyone goes out there, please write down your observations and the gauge reading and send them to water.goodwin@gmail.com. Make this your mission in life every time you go to Flagpole Mountain. Without a lot of observations, this gauge won’t make much sense. We will do our best to link the new gauge to Fish’s page and AW once we know the minimum levels for Pine Creek. We will then correlate/estimate the minimum levels for Buck, Clear, Crumb, Maxwell, and Little Cedar Creeks with further observation.

The gauge is installed on the Highway 2 bridge. We are trying this location out first because it is the easiest place to install and maintain the gauge, by far. If we determine that backflow from the Kiamichi River affects the gauge readings, we will move the gauge upstream by about a quarter of a mile.

The story does not stop here. As we begin to gravitate to Flagpole Mountain, please take a moment to realize every time you go, you are representing the paddling community. Act like responsible adults; we need them on our side. Access is not as established as I would like for Flagpole Mountain, so we need to help to convince the community to welcome us in as tourists and stewards. Please pick up trash every time you go, don’t speed, and be polite. If someone in your group even mentions trespassing as a joke, throw them out of the car. Building a good dialogue with the local community takes time and consistency—guaranteed access to even a few runs is better than one day of glory/infamy that ruins it for everyone. I have met with the County leadership and they are supportive of our presence there so long as we are responsible.

Finally, this gauge will need continued funding for 2018 and beyond. If you paddle any of these creeks, you should be a member of the Arkansas Canoe Club. The ACC already is funding several other gauges (including the Richland Creek gauge in Arkansas) and will continue working on access and gauge issues in our region. A few plans are already in the works. $25 a year for a membership is a pittance for all the benefits that the ACC provides you. Additionally, we will have several fundraisers to help fund the Pine Creek gauge later this year—when we do, please come support your access to Flagpole Mountain.

Real time Flagpole Mountain stream flow information is available here:
https://nwis.waterdata.usgs.gov/ok/nwis ... 0065,00060
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Pine Creek Photo.JPG

tegarrett
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Joined: Tue May 09, 2017 8:44 pm
Name: Tom Garrett

Re: Pine Creek Gauge is UP!!!!

Post by tegarrett » Tue May 09, 2017 10:32 pm

Check out K River Campground for camping and canoeing near Pine Creek. We are located on Highway 2 just 6 miles SW of Pine Creek bridge. All of our canoe trips are on the Kiamichi River but we are very familiar with Pine Creek and Buck Creek. Give us a call or email. manager@kriver.com 580-298-2442

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